During a Sunday press conference, Sen. Chuck Schumer called for at least $5 million to combat illegal fentanyl shipments into the US through JFK Airport's mail processing facility.
A fentanyl dose weighing just two to three milligrams can be deadly. Fentanyl is approximately 50 times stronger than heroin
"I will try to get even more than this as the appropriations process plays out, because JFK’s facility needs continuous upgrades to keep pace with fast-changing methods by traffickers," he said. "We need more canines, staff, new infrastructure to the processing facility, and state-of-the-art detection equipment to fully disrupt the opioid supply chain."
There were 1,441 unintentional drug overdose deaths in New York City in 2017, according to the NYC Department of Health. Fentanyl was involved in 44 percent of all fatal overdoses in 2016.
Schumer said these numbers show how critical it is to tackle the fentanyl issue.